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Diabetic Blisters On Bottom Of Feet

Diabetes: Foot Problems And Foot Care

Diabetes: Foot Problems And Foot Care

F A C T S H E E T F O R P A T I E N T S A N D F A M I L I E S People with diabetes are at risk for foot problems. This handout explains why these problems occur and what you can do to protect your feet. Why are foot problems so common in people with diabetes? In people with diabetes, high blood glucose can cause two complications — both of which can result in foot problems. You may have one or both of these: • Nerve damage (neuropathy). Nerve damage from high blood glucose usually begins in the hands and feet. It can cause painful symptoms — tingling, aching, or throbbing — but it can also reduce sensation. If you can’t really feel cold, heat, or pain in your feet, it’s easy to ignore an injury or infection. And unfortunately, in people with diabetes, even a small blister or stubbed toe can become serious. • Poor circulation. High blood glucose can damage your blood vessels and reduce blood flow to your feet. This means that injuries take longer to heal. Over time, poor circulation in your feet can even change the shape of your feet and toes. This can cause problems with the way you walk. Are foot problems really that serious? In people with diabetes, yes — foot problems can be very serious. In the worst cases, they can lead to deformed feet, wounds that won’t heal, and serious infections that require surgery. In fact, diabetes-related foot problems are a leading reason for leg and foot amputations. Fortunately, good care can lower your chance of serious problems. Following the steps outlined at right, you and your medical caregivers can work together to care for your feet. However, the most important things are those you do (and don’t do) on your own to protect your feet. See the next page for these do Continue reading >>

Diabetic Foot Pain

Diabetic Foot Pain

by Kenneth B. Rehm, DPM Includes photo of Dr. Kenneth B. Rehm, DPM Diabetes is one of the most common reasons people seek relief for painful feet. With diabetes, four types of foot problems may arise in the feet. Nerve Problems due to Diabetes The most common contributor to diabetic foot pain is a nerve problem called Peripheral Neuropathy. This is where the nerves are directly affected by the disease process. There are basically three types of peripheral neuropathy: sensory, motor, and autonomic neuropathy. A large percentage of pain diabetic patients complain of is due to sensory neuropathy. This can show up as "sensitive pain," where the amount of pain is not proportional to the amount of insult that is causing it. For instance, just touching the skin or putting a sheet over your feet in bed could be painful. This can be present at the same time as numbness in the feet. Sensory neuropathy symptoms can include burning, tingling or a stabbing pain. Relief is foremost on someone's mind when painful neuropathy has raised its ugly head. The first thing to do is to check your blood sugar for the past several weeks to see if there has been a trend toward high blood sugar (Editor's Note: The A1c test is traditionally employed to determine this, and should be repeated about every three months.) Persistent high blood sugar can contribute to this type of pain. Massaging your feet with a diabetic foot cream, or using a foot roller, often takes the edge off the pain. Vitamin B preparations are often recommended; and there are a variety of prescription medications that do work. Using cushioned, supportive shoes and foot support inserts is always needed to protect the feet from the pounding, rubbing and irritating pressures that contribute to neuropathic pain. Motor neuropathy can Continue reading >>

Diabetic Foot Problems

Diabetic Foot Problems

What foot problems can be caused by diabetes? Diabetes mellitus can cause serious foot problems. These conditions include diabetic neuropathy (loss of normal nerve function) and peripheral vascular disease (loss of normal circulation). These two conditions can lead to: Diabetic foot ulcers: wounds that do not heal or become infected Infections: skin infections (cellulitis), bone infections (osteomyelitis) and pus collections (abscesses) Gangrene: dead tissue resulting from complete loss of circulation Charcot arthropathy: fractures and dislocations that may result in severe deformities Amputation: partial foot, whole foot or below-knee amputation What are the symptoms of a diabetic foot problem? ​Symptoms of neuropathy may include the loss of protective sensation or pain and tingling sensations. Patients may develop a blister, abrasion or wound but may not feel any pain. Decreased circulation may cause skin discoloration, skin temperature changes or pain. Depending on the specific problem that develops, patients may notice swelling, discoloration (red, blue, gray or white skin), red streaks, increased warmth or coolness, injury with no or minimal pain, a wound with or without drainage, staining on socks, tingling pain or deformity. Patients with infection may have fever, chills, shakes, redness, drainage, loss of blood sugar control or shock (unstable blood pressure, confusion and delirium). How do some of these complications develop? ​Neuropathy is associated with the metabolic abnormalities of diabetes. Vascular disease is present in many patients at the time of diagnosis of diabetes. Ulcers may be caused by external pressure or rubbing from a poorly fitting shoe, an injury from walking barefoot, or a foreign object in the shoe (rough seam, stone or tack). Infecti Continue reading >>

Causes Of Blisters On The Bottom Of The Foot

Causes Of Blisters On The Bottom Of The Foot

Blisters are generally small, fluid-filled bubbles that appear just underneath the skin. Blisters are a common cause of foot pain, particularly in runners and other athletes. According to Foot Pain Explained, blisters most often appear on the bottom of the foot, but they can also be found along the sides or on top. Either an injury to the skin or disease causes the top layer of skin, the epidermis, to separate from the middle layer, the dermis, and the space in between skin layers fills with fluid as a protective measure. Video of the Day Usually, a blister forms as a result of friction and pressure, possibly from shoes that are too tight or repetitive rubbing. A blister contains a clear fluid, but if there is an injury, it may contain blood. A burn may also cause a blister to form. If the blister results from a burn and becomes infected, it may contain pus. Treatment includes keeping the blister clean and possibly releasing the fluid to alleviate pain. An athlete's foot infection, also known as tinea pedis, can be the cause of small blisters on the bottom of the foot. According to MedlinePlus, an athlete's foot infection occurs when a particular type of fungus grows on the skin. These fungi thrive in warm and moist places like the feet. The skin may form tiny blisters that are itchy at first and then crack open, making a crusty rash. Athlete's foot can be treated with a number of over-the-counter antifungal medications. Dyshidrotic eczema is a skin condition that causes small blisters to form on the bottom of the feet and palms of the hands. According to MedlinePlus, dyshidrotic eczema is more common in women than men. Blisters, which become intensely itchy, last for approximately 3 weeks and are more prevalent during certain times of the year, especially in those who Continue reading >>

Caring For Wounds And Foot Ulcers In Diabetic Patients

Caring For Wounds And Foot Ulcers In Diabetic Patients

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that there are 30.3 million people living with diabetes in the United States. Diabetes comes with many serious complications, including chronic wounds, nerve damage and foot ulcers. The American Podiatric Medical Association reports that 15 percent of diabetic patients will develop a foot ulcer. Further, diabetes is the leading cause of nontraumatic, lower-extremity amputations in the U.S. — caused by infected wounds and foot ulcers that cannot heal. While difficult to treat, foot ulcers often can be prevented. “Controlling risk factors and monitoring the skin daily is key to minimizing the negative effects of diabetes,” said Nancy Estocado, Advanced Wound Care Clinical Coordinator at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center. For anyone with diabetes, understanding how to prevent and properly address wounds — especially foot ulcers — is integral to living a healthy life. What is a diabetic foot ulcer? A diabetic foot ulcer is an open wound or sore, commonly located on the bottom of the foot, in a patient with diabetes. However, not all ulcers on the foot are diabetic. Distinguishing between a diabetic foot ulcer and a foot ulcer caused by other reasons is important because it will inform treatment options. “A good history, the primary cause of the wound and the wound location are all important to know when diagnosing a diabetic foot ulcer,” Estocado said. Why are diabetics prone to foot ulcers and other chronic wounds? Diabetic patients are more prone to developing chronic wounds for a few reasons. Two of the most influencing factors are nerve damage and blood circulation issues that are common among diabetic patients. Nerve damage, or neuropathy, tends to occur in patients who have a longer history with di Continue reading >>

Foot Ulcers, Diabetic Ulcer, Feet Conditions

Foot Ulcers, Diabetic Ulcer, Feet Conditions

Pressure Ulcers Pressure ulcers are sores that occur when pressure cuts off the blood supply to the skin. The stress that is caused by the body's weight, and the impact of the foot striking the ground can place the big toe, the heel and the ball of the foot at greatest risk for pressure ulcers. If left untreated, an ulcer may allow infection to enter your body. If the infection reaches the bloodstream or bone, your life or limb may be at risk. With your doctor's help, pressure ulcers can be controlled, healed and even prevented. How Do They Form? Pressure or friction against the bottom of your foot causes the skin to thicken, forming a callus. If the skin keeps thickening, the callus presses up into the foot. This kills healthy tissue, and causes pain. Unfortunately, you may not notice the pain if you have a loss of sensation. As healthy skin dies, an ulcer forms. Ulcers may progress from hot spots to infected wounds very quickly. Red "hot" spots on the skin are signs of pressure or friction. They are a warning that you need to take immediate care of your feet. If pressure is not relieved, a hot spot is likely to blister. Left untreated, a blister can turn into an open wound. If bacteria enter the ulcer, infection can occur, causing more healthy tissue to die. The infected ulcer may begin to drain with a white, yellow or greenish discharge. Some infected ulcers may bleed or have a bad odor. If you develop any of these signs, it is important to call your physician immediately. Testing: Blood flow and nerve testing may be done if you have a chronic health problem like diabetes. Testing sensations can be as simple as finding out if you can feel a monofilament at certain pressure spots. Testing your blood flow is simple. The most common method used is an ankle-brachial inde Continue reading >>

Foot Care When You Have Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy

Foot Care When You Have Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy

For people with diabetes, the smallest blister, bug bite or foot sore could lead to a difficult-to-heal foot infection, a skin ulcer and even the possibility of amputation. Risks are high – with diabetes, your lifetime risk for a foot ulcer is 25%.1 And between 9 and 20% of foot ulcers lead to amputations in the US..2 The causes: Nerve damage due to peripheral diabetic neuropathy that can rob you of protective skin sensations plus circulation problems and high blood sugar that can interfere with rapid healing. That is why diabetes experts recommend that everyone with type 1 or type 2 diabetes protect their feet with daily foot checks, smart choices in socks and shoes, and comprehensive foot exams by a healthcare practitioner at least once a year. These strategies could save your feet: In one study of 352 people with diabetes from the Regenstrief Institute for Health Care in Indianapolis, those who learned and practiced good self-care for their feet for a year were 59% less likely to have a serious foot wound than those who didn’t .3 And they’re recommended for everyone with diabetes, not just people who already know they have nerve damage. The reason? Diabetic peripheral neuropathy can cause a dangerous loss of protective sensation before you realize it. In an Australian study of 32 people with diabetes, researchers found that just one in four could detect a foot injury like a small blister -- but 78% of study volunteers thought their feet were still sensitive to small problems.4 An Easy Plan To Help Protect Your Feet Do a Daily Foot Check. Sit down, take off your shoes and socks and check the top, bottom and all parts of the toes of both feet every day. Use a mirror or ask your spouse or partner to help if you have trouble seeing all areas of your feet. Check for Continue reading >>

32 Home Remedies For Diabetes

32 Home Remedies For Diabetes

Even though it looks much the same as any other foot, the diabetic foot requires special attention. Why? Nerve damage is common with diabetes, especially in the lower extremities. Blood vessels are damaged as a result of the disease and circulation is decreased. When this happens, feet and legs tend to be cold and sores heal slowly, in some cases taking years to heal. This can easily lead to infection. Nerve damage can also decrease your ability to feel sensations in your feet, such as pain, heat, and cold. That means you may not notice a foot injury until you have a major infection. A common complaint from many people is, "My feet are killing me!" For a person with diabetes, that statement could be all too true. Loss of nerve function, especially on the soles of the feet, can reduce feeling and mask a sore or injury on the foot that, if left unattended, can turn into an ulcer or gangrene. Neuropathy, damage to the nerves, is a common problem for people with diabetes. It occurs most often in the feet and legs, and its signs include recurring burning, pain, or numbness. In addition to being painful, neuropathy can be harmful because if it causes a loss of feeling in the foot, even a minor foot injury may go undiscovered. In extreme cases, this can lead to serious infection, gangrene, or even amputation of the limb. Because of this, people with diabetes must be meticulous in caring for their feet. Moderate exercise, such as walking, cycling, or swimming, are best for people with diabetes. Because people with diabetes have to take some extra precautions while exercising, you will need to work with your health-care provider to design an exercise program that is right for you. For example, since exercise lowers blood glucose, you will need to learn how to maintain the correc Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Your Feet

Diabetes And Your Feet

If you have diabetes, here’s a way to keep standing on your own two feet: check them every day—even if they feel fine—and see your doctor if you have a cut or blister that won’t heal. There’s a lot to manage if you have diabetes: checking your blood sugar, making healthy food, finding time to be active, taking medicines, going to doctor’s appointments. With all that, your feet might be the last thing on your mind. But daily care is one of the best ways to prevent foot complications. Between 60% and 70% of people with diabetes have diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage). You can have nerve damage in any part of your body, but nerves in your feet and legs are most often affected. Nerve damage can cause you to lose feeling in your feet. Feeling No Pain Some people with nerve damage have numbness, tingling, or pain, but others have no symptoms. Nerve damage can also lower your ability to feel pain, heat, or cold. Living without pain sounds pretty good, but it comes at a high cost. Pain is the body’s way of telling you something’s wrong so you can take care of yourself. If you don’t feel pain in your feet, you may not notice a cut, blister, sore, or other problem. Small problems can become serious if they aren’t treated early. Risk Factors Anyone with diabetes can develop nerve damage, but these factors increase your risk: Nerve damage, along with poor circulation—another diabetes complication—puts you at risk for developing a foot ulcer (a sore or wound) that could get infected and not heal well. If an infection doesn’t get better with treatment, your toe, foot, or part of your leg may need to be amputated (removed by surgery) to prevent the infection from spreading and to save your life. When you check your feet every day, you can catch problems early Continue reading >>

What Does A Foot Ulcer Look Like? An Indianapolis Podiatrist Answers

What Does A Foot Ulcer Look Like? An Indianapolis Podiatrist Answers

As a Indianapolis podiatrist that specializes in diabetic foot care and wound care, I often get asked by patients as well as by family & friends, what does a foot ulcer look like? And why do people with diabetes develop foot ulcers? A foot ulcer is an open sore. These can be superficial such as a blister that has opened with underlying pink raw tissue exposed or an ulcer can be deep and extend down to the bone. Some ulcers are infected and drain heavily while some have very little or no drainage. An ulcer may or may not be painful. People develop foot ulcers for many different reasons and you don’t need to have diabetes to develop a foot ulcer. Pressure, trauma, and poor circulation can all lead to foot ulcers. A diabetic with a red open sore on the bottom of their foot generally surrounded by a callus has a diabetic foot ulcer. A diabetic foot ulcer, also called a neuropathic ulcer, occur most often on the bottom of the foot over a bony prominence. Ulcers can also develop on the sides of the foot or tops of the toes from friction and pressure of shoes or from poor circulation. For example, a person with diabetes develops a callus on the bottom of their foot. A callus is a build-up of skin due to increased pressure on the foot. Left untreated or, often when self-treated, the callus becomes infected or breaks down into an ulcer. The callus and the eventual ulcer many times go left untreated because a diabetic patient lacks feeling called neuropathy and is unaware that the ulcer is present. This is why you often hear that diabetics should check their feet daily and see a foot doctor routinely. Or the person may be aware of the ulcer but because it is not painful they do not seek immediate treatment. Once an ulcer is discovered it is imperative that professional treatmen Continue reading >>

How To Determine Whether Foot And Leg Blisters Are Related To Water Retention Or Diabetes

How To Determine Whether Foot And Leg Blisters Are Related To Water Retention Or Diabetes

Leg and Foot Health Issues A number of medical patients confuse the symptoms of water retention (also known as fluid retention or edema) with the appearance of chronic diabetic skin blisters. Misunderstandings about the differences between the two conditions can cause undue anxiety in patients and their caregivers. In simple terms, water retention happens inside the body cavities and tissues to cause swelling of such areas as joints and limbs. In contrast, diabetic blisters occur on the outside surface of the body to cause raised areas filled with liquid. Disclaimer: The following information is intended to provide a general overview. It should not be used for official diagnosis or substituted for the expertise of a licensed healthcare practitioner. Please see your medical provider for complete diagnosis and treatment. Click thumbnail to view full-size Foot, leg, and ankle swelling are the painless swelling of the feet and ankles as a common problem, especially among older people. — US National Library of Medicine; Medline Plus, Article 003104 What is Water Retention? Fluid retention, or edema, and diabetic blisters are different in a number of ways. The first difference is that edema occurs inside body cavities or tissues, while diabetic blisters appear on the skin, outside of the body where you can see them. Edema does not cause blisters on the skin, but it can cause swelling below the skin layers, inside other tissues and body cavities. This swelling can stretch the skin above the edema and make it look shiny (please see photos above). Patients can confuse edema with blisters associated with untreated and uncontrolled or poorly controlled blood glucose levels in the chronic varieties of type I and type II diabetes and even hypoglycemia. Pre-diabetes and gestational Continue reading >>

Common Diabetes Foot Problems And How To Prevent Them

Common Diabetes Foot Problems And How To Prevent Them

Foot problems in diabetes can be caused by damage to both large and small blood vessels, which is much more common in diabetes. Foot problems, including nerve damage or peripheral neuropathy, usually begin with vascular disease. Damage to small blood vessels, in particular, appears to be the major cause of nerve damage that results in loss of feeling, or worse pain and burning sensations that bother the feel and legs. Once nerve damage progresses, it triggers loss of motor control and the abnormal gait that results in ulcers and amputations. Preventing foot problems in diabetes begins by preventing the loss of circulation that will result in serious nerve damage. This is relatively easy today if the risks for circulatory problems are recognized early. Keeping the blood pressure below 130/80 is essential for reducing damage to blood vessel walls. Preventing placque formation is also critical. This is done with medications the lower triglycerides and raise HDL, such as gemfibrozil and niacin, and those that lower LDL and make it lighter, such as the statins. Blood vessels walls can also be protected with certain blood pressure meds called ACE inhibitors. Blood flow may be improved with high dose vitamin E, although 1200 mg to 1500 mg a day are usually required for this effect. absence of foot pulses a pale color of the foot when it is raised feet that feel cold pain at rest pain at night relieved by hanging the feet over the side of the bed thin appearing skin loss hair from the toes and feet shiny skin a blue color of the toes reddish color of the feet ulcers that don't heal a foot infection that is hard to heal Although amputations are 15 times as common with diabetes, about half can be prevented with simple steps that protect the feet: Unfortunately, about 60 to 70 per Continue reading >>

Diabetes: Foot & Skin Related Complications

Diabetes: Foot & Skin Related Complications

How can diabetes affect feet and skin? For people with diabetes, having too much glucose (sugar) in their blood for a long time can cause some serious complications, including foot and skin problems, as well as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, eye damage, and other problems. How can diabetes affect my feet? Diabetes can cause two problems that can affect your feet: Diabetic neuropathy — Uncontrolled diabetes can damage your nerves. If you have damaged nerves in your legs and feet, you might not feel heat, cold or pain. This lack of feeling is called diabetic neuropathy. If you do not feel a cut or sore on your foot because of neuropathy, the cut could get worse and become infected. Peripheral vascular disease — Diabetes also affects the flow of blood. Without good blood flow, it takes longer for a sore or cut to heal. Poor blood flow in the arms and legs is called peripheral vascular disease. (The word "peripheral" means "located away from a central point," and the word "vascular" refers to the blood vessels. Peripheral vascular disease is a circulation disorder that affects blood vessels away from the heart.) If you have an infection that will not heal because of poor blood flow, you are at risk for developing gangrene, which is the death of tissue due to a lack of blood. To keep gangrene from spreading, the doctor may have to remove a toe, foot, or part of a leg. This procedure is called amputation. Diabetes is the most common, non-traumatic cause of leg amputations. Each year, more than 56,000 people with diabetes have amputations. However, research suggests that more than half of these amputations can be prevented through proper foot care. What are some common foot problems of people with diabetes? Anyone can get the foot problems listed below. For people Continue reading >>

Beware Of The Diabetic Heart Attack Of The Foot

Beware Of The Diabetic Heart Attack Of The Foot

Diabetes can wreak havoc on the foot, resulting in infection, leading to foot/leg amputation. While every patient with diabetes has a theoretical risk, it’s the presence of more advanced diabetes that truly makes the foot susceptible to a catastrophic event. I would like to introduce a term called the “Diabetic Heart Attack of the Foot” to illustrate the severity and seriousness of two advanced diabetic foot problems that may cause limb-threatening events: 1. Foot wound (medical term: foot ulcer) 2. Diabetic foot fracture (medical term: charcot foot). Similar to a heart attack, a “foot attack” may occur as a relatively mild (but still serious) event that involves active management, or more severe, which can result in immediate hospitalization and limb salvage surgery/possible amputation. Diabetes (and more so, poorly-uncontrolled diabetes) may lead to two distinct serious medical problems that interfere with normal function of the foot. They are: Peripheral Neuropathy (decreased or loss of sensation to feet): Without sensation to the foot, a person may not feel things on the bottom of the foot, or inside of the foot. This leads to stepping on objects that can puncture the skin and cause infections. Peripheral Arterial Disease (decreased or loss of blood supply to the foot): Proper circulation is necessary to maintain healthy feet. When blood supply becomes diminished it can result in poor skin texture and healing difficulties — the most dangerous is gangrene. The effect of diabetes on the foot doesn’t happen overnight. They occur slowly over time. Diabetic foot wounds Sores/wounds on the foot are called “ulcers” and often a strong indicator of advanced diabetes that occur when with sensory and/or circulation problems. Most commonly, these wounds occur Continue reading >>

Why Is Foot Care Important When I Have Diabetes?

Why Is Foot Care Important When I Have Diabetes?

Having diabetes increases your risk for foot sores, infections, and injury. The problems can range from minor sores to permanent damage to the foot. Sometimes foot problems can get so bad that the foot or even the leg may have to be amputated. It’s important to learn how to care for your feet and legs to lower the risk of infection and prevent the possible loss of your foot or leg. What is the cause of foot problems? When you have diabetes, you may develop poor blood flow to your feet. This makes it harder for your feet to fight infections and heal from injuries. As a result, infections and sores on your feet are more likely to become serious. Without treatment, severe infections can cause the flesh of your foot to die (gangrene). People who have diabetes are much more likely to have gangrene in the foot than people who do not have diabetes. Because diabetes damages nerve endings (a problem called neuropathy), you may not feel pain if you hurt your foot or get an infection. This can make it hard for you to know when your foot needs medical treatment. This is why it’s so important for you to check your feet every day. What are the symptoms of a foot problem? The first symptoms of an injury or infection may be swelling or redness. Another possible symptom is pain, but often people who have had diabetes for awhile cannot feel pain in the foot. Sores may appear on the skin of your foot. They may heal but later come back in the same place. If the sores are not treated, the flesh may die and turn black. Or the infection may spread. If the infection spreads to the blood, it can be fatal. How are foot problems diagnosed? Your healthcare provider will suspect that you are developing a sore if there is an area of redness or a blister on your foot. Most often sores are on the Continue reading >>

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